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And then he was four.

Darling Devilboy,

You’re 4!

How did that happen?

I mean, the birthday business is no great shock given you had one on the same day last year but seriously, how can you be four already?

It seems like just yesterday that you burst into our lives will all the sparkle and energy of a chorus dancer in a glitzy Broadway show but it has been four whole years since that extraordinary moment that changed our lives forever.

You are more special, more delightful, more inspiring, more clever, more caring, more funny and far more eccentric than we could have ever imagined. And we are, quite simply, more crazy in love with you than you’ll ever know.

Thank you for another all-singing, all-dancing, all-wonderful year of you.

Happy birthday beautiful boy.

I love you.

Mummy xx

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Divine intervention.

Dear Pope,

You’ve been at it again, you cheeky thing.

http://tinyurl.com/7xaw8fq

You know, I’ve  been thinking about your theory and if you want to make a stronger point about how medical intervention undoes what “God has planned”, perhaps you should think about losing the team of medico’s that keeps you going! Alternatively, and as I may have suggested before here , you could just shut up! It’s a shame really that a little Divine intervention doesn’t occur before you open your trap.

I’d share a few of my other thoughts about your latest medieval monologue on how IVF will cause the downfall of humanity but let’s be honest, it’d mostly be a bunch of swearing and I’m far too busy looking after my own genetic replicants to waste any more perfectly good profanities on your archaic drivel.

Cheers,

Mummyfied

PS. I’m confused. If sex between a man and his wife is the only way in you humble opinion to conceive a human life, can you please explain the Virgin Mary to me? Couldn’t that be considered a kind of Divine IVF?

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An epistle to a one-year-old Sugar-Puff

Dearest baby girl,

It’s 6.00 am and I am extremely awake. You, sweetness, are not. For once! I can’t sleep because my head is so full of you, precious girl, at this sweetly significant time. You see, one year ago at this exact same time I was also awake. Only on that occasion I was being raced to the hospital due to an impatient little girl who was in rather a hurry to be born.

It’s been one year since your burst screaming into the world, all pink and squishy and so gloriously alive. One year since I first held you in my arms, amazed that your daddy and I, with the assistance of a cast of thousands and the wonders of modern science, were clever enough to make perfect little you.

It’s been a year of holding your warm little body close in the dark of night, all night, given that you are nocturnal. Soothing you and feeding you, tired but buoyed by the the physical and emotional connection that time affords us. (But don’t tell your dad or he may not let me sleep in on Sundays). I must admit though, that one year in to this whole you business, the party-all-night thing is getting a bit ‘tired’ and I’d love you to consider giving the sleeping-all-night thing a bit of a try instead. Just saying. No pressure! Think it over and get back to me – preferably between 6am and 7pm.

It’s been one year of watching you weaving your spell over your daddy (or “Dee Dee” as you squeal when you see him) with every flutter of your lovely long lashes. No matter how tired and cranky after a night of your nocturnal naughtiness, one glance into those beautiful big brown eyes as they peer from your perfect little face and he is molten mush.

It’s been one year of watching your big brother become ever more besotted with you. From that first, perfectly peculiar (and let’s be honest, fairly disgusting) lick he gave you at the hospital, he’s been dedicated to doing whatever he can to make you smile, which you seem to do pretty much all the time. There’s been no jealousy, no rivalry and no drama – just a sweet little boy thrilled to share his life and his things with “the most beautifulist and laughiest baby sister ever”.

It’s been one year in which my life has been changed forever, in ways too wonderful for me to ever have imagined. As a professional cynic and card carrying member of the basic black brigade, never could I have foreseen a life filled with so much colour or so many flounces, ruffles and bows. And never could I have imagined how whole-heartedly I would embrace my long buried girly side.

It’s been one year of your infectious happiness and, of watching you grow and thrive and become quite possibly the most endearing baby in the whole history of babies. One year of nurturing and protecting you and trying to be the very best mummy you could want. One year of worrying about the things I could and can and should do better. Worrying that is until, sweet girl, you smile at me with such trust that I realise the best thing I can do is simply love you.

It’s been one year since you joined our little family. A family that, during those long, long years your dad and I spent trying to conceive you and your brother, I feared we would never have. But here you both are, and you are precious gifts that your dad and I are thankful for every single day.

It’s been one year of you. And, when all is said and done, that is all that really matters.

Happy first birthday baby girl.

I love you.

Mummy

xx

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Super stupor

 

Devilboy has just informed us that he is a hero with special superpowers.

And what exactly are these “superpowers”?

“Making really good meatballs!”

Of course, I should have known that! I don’t even know why I needed to ask. And it is a formidable and frightening power. Shit, Superman could only fly and catch bullets in his bare hands! And Spiderman just made namby pamby webs …  small time when compared with the moulding of cheap raw meat into bite sized morsels.

The bad guys of the world must be quivering in their boots knowing that Meatball Man is on the case… either that or they’re preparing some al dente spaghetti and a nice red sauce!

Sigh.

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The happiest insomniac on the block.

If he really knows when you’ve been sleeping and knows when you’re awake… my wee wicked Devilette is bang in trouble this time next week. Cheeky little minxlette…
 
 

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On the rocks?

This afternoon at childcare, surrounded by all his teachers and ooddles of other parents, Devilboy was asked by his father what he would like for dinner. His very loud answer?

“Vodka”.

How embarassing…. he knows perfectly well that Wednesday night is Tequila night. Vodka on a Wednesday is so last year.

 

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Good bye and good luck

Devilboy packed his bag this morning (with all the necessities – Elmo, a dinosaur and some sultanas) flung it nonchalantly over his three year old shoulder said his goodbyes and announced that he is off to climb the Eiffel Tower.

Bye bye my baby boy. Bonne chance.

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Oh Ship!

Holy Palazzo Batman!

We’ve been Lording it up in Venice in the most ridiculously oversized and indulgent hotel suite in the history of oversized and indulgent hotel suites. We’re talking a palace. Literally! The main room of our suite (yep, there’s more than one) is bigger than our entire flat, with a two story ceiling boasting OTT Venetian Glass chandeliers the size of a car. Deep red silk walls, a marble bathroom the size of the average football field and two story windows with billowing silk drapes opening dramatically to not one but two balconies overlooking the Grand Canal certainly don’t detract from the glamour.

Am I boasting? Hell yeah! I’m poking out my tongue and singing “ner nee ner” as I type. This is the kind of room Venetian fantasies are made of. The bed is so bloody big that all four of us sleep together and can still stretch out with a full arms length between each other – it’s twice the size of the average king-size bed back home.

And it is here that my boasting concludes and I drop my eyes shamefaced, because nomatter how fab this bank breaker of a hotel suite is, there is no room for living it up for a couple sharing their bed with two small, snuffling, squirming, sweaty, farty Devilchildren, who need to be asleep before 8pm.  Instead of falling into each others arms swept up in the romance of it all we sneak out on to our little balcony and sit on the concrete step in our fluffy robes with a bottle of cheap Prosecco and plastic tumblers and watch the child free world go about its business.

Sigh!  Il romanticismo è morto.

Though Venice is an adult kind of town  bursting with museums, art galleries and glass stores (think bulls and china shops with the all-dancing, all-hypo Devilboy in tow) and a tad bereft of kids’ activities, there is still loads to keep a pint sized nut-job amused.  If gondola rides, gelati and granitas don’t cut it, then pizza, palazzos and pigeon chasing in the piazza certainly are. Devilboy spends the days wrapped up in the magic of his own lunatic head convinced he is Prince Charming. When he isn’t swanning about on the watery world of the Venetian canals, he is lording it up on the imaginary horse he rides up and down the narrow lanes, clip-clopping all the way – looking and sounding all the world like a scale version Monty Python movie.

As fab as Venice is, it is in this instance just a means to a holiday end. We’re here for our first ever cruise and our eccentric offspring  is beside himself before we even see our ship as a spy movie sexy wooden speed boat taxis us up the Grand Canal to the port. As are we at the surreal site of the little loon striking a dramatic pose on said speedboat dressed in an ensemble of tropical sunhat, hawaiian shirt, camo shorts and a mysterious feathery Venetian mask that he acquired at a market stall in the piazza. He looks more than a little like the showgirl love child of Hunter S. Thomson and Zorro.  The exotic outfit doesn’t however amuse the customs officials at the port who need to see his face to stamp his passport. Convincing a deranged Devilboy of the necessity to do this proves problematic and a public meltdown of biblical proportion ensues! After several years of screaming he final yields to the demands to demask, gets his passport stamped and we finally find ourselves face to bow with our ship

Fuck me!

“It’s benourmous” whispers Devilboy who, stunned by its gargantuan scale, has invented a new word “ ‘Cos it’s much bigger than enormous, mummy.” And he is right. It. Is. Fucking. Huge.

And, if I am being totally honest, it’s made me a little nervous! A cruise!  A giant cruise, but a cruise nonetheless. I mean, that’s my grandparents idea of travelling! We’re going to be trapped at sea with old fogeys, bingo and buffets! I’m having visions of a giant floating RSL club. In a blind panic I am desperate to return to our swanky, wanky Venetian pad… instead of my imagined pastel purgatory!

Barely an hour later I’ve had a complete about face. There is no denying that visually, when compared to our luxe Venetian Palazzo, the ship is designed to appeal to the masses. And that does mean a serious lack of velvet drapes, dark silk walls and antique furniture…  But, after exploring deck after deck of this floating city, I am a total convert. If I poke out my retinas this place rocks! There’s a day spa, multi-story theatre, endless dining options, a zillion bars all serving prefectly good alcohol, three pools, a groovy water slide and umpteen spas…  and not a quoits set in sight. Best of all, there’s a big fat comfy bed to sleep in when we are in transit… which beats the crap out of flying anyday!

Every morning we step out on to our cabin balcony to be met with a different view. We visit Koper,  Slovenia and, like every dumbass Western tourist before us, spend our day singing Barry Manilow tunes as we explore the old town. In Italy’s Ravenna, I prostrate myself at my beloved Dante’s tomb – love your work fella! In Bari we visit the pretty Apulian countryside with its quirky conical white-washed trulli homes or “fairy houses” as Devilboy delightfully dubs them before purchasing a plastic sword to bludgeon his way back aboard the ship (and another run in with customs who take umbrage at his toy sword) Get a grip guys! This kid is drawing more damned attention than the average criminal mastermind. I swear by the end of this trip he’ll be on Interpol’s “most wanted” list.

Then it’s off to Croatia and fabulous Dubrovnik where we find ourselves sailing on an old wooden “pirate” ship to the fortified walls of the old town. Much to Devilboy’s delight the captain offers him a feathered pirate hat, fake parrot and a turn at captaining the boat, before promptly disappearing. The other passengers are blissfully unaware they are sailing under the captaincy of a delusional three-year-old pirate who can’t actually see over the wheel while we quietly shit ourselves and wonder where the hell the captain has fucked off to. Luckily we all make it back to the ship intact and ready for a last full day at sea.

Three thousand trips down the waterslide later and we decide it is time to sell our souls to the Gods of mundane entertainment and visit the ice show! Cringe. Don’t get me wrong, there is no questioning the amazing talent on display but it’s just not my thing…  it’s a touch showbizzy for mine. A drink helps. Two makes it relatively painless.  Out of practise with the whole booze caper, a third will probably have me donning some sparkly lycra and skating myself! Devilboy, king of  kitsch, loves it. “Especially the girl with spikes on her head”! Right.

No unpacking, no big changes to routines and bedtime schedules, no endless waiting in airports. Life simply goes on while in transit. What’s not to love… well, besides the lack of velvet drapery.

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In the pink

“When I’m big I am going to be a fireman cat and dog doctor. Oh, and a guitar rockstar. And mama… you will be my pink sparkle fairy”.

Of course I will. It seems like such a natural progression from wearing head to toe black for the last 25 years.

Quelle horreur.

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Stop dragon my heart around.

Most boys ask for a pet dog at some point in their life. Not Devilboy.

He has requested a  pet dragon.

“A black flying dragon.  That I can ride in the sky. With Fire. And nice, not mean. From the dragon shop.”

Well duh, where else would you purchase a dragon? I’m sure the local Westfield has several.

 Jeez, I just hope they haven’t sold out.

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